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<nettime> Call for Abstracts-- Computing the corporeal
Nicolas Salazar Sutil on Tue, 16 Feb 2016 14:25:59 +0100 (CET)

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<nettime> Call for Abstracts-- Computing the corporeal

   Apologies for cross posting...

   Computing the corporeal

   Special issue of Computational Culture, a Journal of Software Studies

   Edited by Nicolas Salazar Sutil, Sita Popat and Scott deLahunta


   Intersections between human movement, computer science and
   motion-tracking/sensing technologies have led to novel ways of
   transferring body data from physical to digital contexts. From a
   practical perspective, this integration requires engagement across key
   disciplines, including movement studies, kinesiology, kinematics,
   biomechanics, biomedical science and health studies, dance science,
   sports science, and computer science. This development has also
   provoked theoretical and critical discourse that has tried to preserve,
   based on its grounding on bodily and kinetic practice, the
   differentiation of lived-in and body-specific knowledge. Here is a mode
   of datarization perhaps closer to what Deleuze (1988) called "immediate
   datum": i.e. information stemming not from an abstract and re-moved
   conceptualization, but from real-world experience of movement, and
   the immediate perception or capture of kinetic information through
   physical or sensorial means. Within the field of software studies,
   advancing a sense of digital materialism has raised concerns for the
   materiality of technological media, for instance by focusing on the
   physical constraints of data storage, or the material dimension of
   computing. But what about "immediation", i.e. immediate computation of
   bodily movement by machines for immediate expression, representation or
   enactment in digital contexts? And what of the representability of such
   immediation? How can we describe movement and preserve its datum of
   difference within a scriptable or graphicable computer language without
   falling into a universal sameness, a movement without bodies?

   Whilst the idea that immediate data may demand a "bodying forth"
   (Thrift 2008), a traffic of bodiliness from biological to technological
   contexts, it is necessary to de-homogenise the `body' category. Perhaps
   what is needed is an understanding of "corporeality" that assumes
   multidimensional and relativistic realities of bodies instead, opening
   up nuanced discourses based on specific body-related ontologies
   (corpuscles, builds, anatomies, skeletons, muscle systems) all making
   up a non-singular sense of the bodily real. As such, this collection
   poses the problem of criteria. Our question is this: how and to what
   effect does the research community adopt arbitrary criteria in order to
   compute the body and bodily movement? Can we define narratives emerging
   from this body-computing arbitration to provoke a critique?

   There is a possible tension between "bodying forth"-- the idea of a
   single body operative across both biological and computational
   contexts--and corporeal relations. We would like to focus this critical
   edition on the relations between differentiated anatomical or bodily
   systems (skeletal, muscular, nerve, etc.), and different modes of
   computation, as well as different theoretical discourses stemming from
   this experiential basis. If we recognize the problem of relationality
   we must assume that more than one complex set of co-relations meet when
   the machine computes the moving human body. How do we start the process
   of computer-generated learning in terms of selecting body parts,
   functions, organs, processes, on the one hand, and key languages, code,
   or indeed technological tools for capture on the other? To what extent
   does corporeal computing contribute to certain bodily systems (or
   perhaps even body types) becoming the key agents of action, and indeed
   learning, in such contexts? How do we respond critically to privileged
   systems (the skeletal, the muscular), and body types (so called `normal
   bodies')? To what extent are computational paradigms still dominated by
   spatial, extensive and quantitative determinations (i.e. the tracking
   of skeleton, body geometry, kinematic shapes, etc.) that hide other,
   more intensive, modes of corporeality? And finally, how do we
   reintegrate the multiplicity of the corporeal in a computational
   synthesis? For instance, how can we understand the quantitative and
   qualitative (dynamics, effort, tone, intensity, etc.) as overlapping
   data priorities?

   Topics or projects might include:

   ·       Computable relations between bodies and digital avatars,
   digital dance representations, digital sports representations, digital
   health representations, digital animation-- digital bodies in general.

   ·       Computable relations between biological bodies and robotic

   ·       Computing relations between physical movement and abstract
   thought, automated thought (AI) or machine learning.

   ·       Computing mobility studies (i.e. relations between body and
   automobile, body and assisted mobility machines, body and prosthetics).

   ·       Computing sociokinetic material (i.e. computing the movement of
   groups of bodies).

   ·       Affective corporeal computing-- the capacity to process
   psychophysical and cognitive processes within corporeal movement (e.g.
   computing effort, dynamics, tonicity, emotion).

   ·       Integration of quantitative and qualitative body datasets.

   ·       Metabody theory and notions of meta-anatomy, meta-strata in the
   ontological literature (i.e. movement of digital ghosts, sprites,
   techno-animism, etc.)

   750 word abstracts should be emailed to n.salazar(at)leeds.ac.uk April
   Any queries can be addressed to Nicolas Salazar Sutil at
   n.salazar(at)leeds.ac.uk, or Sita Popat at s.popat(at)leeds.ac.uk, or
   Scott deLahunta at scott(at)motionbank.org.

   Abstracts will be reviewed by the Computational Culture Editorial Board
   and the special issue editors. Authors of selected abstracts will be
   notified by April 24^th and invited to submit full manuscripts by
   September 26th. These manuscripts are subject to full blind peer review
   according to Computational Culture's policies. The issue will be
   published in January 2017.

   Computational Culture is an online open-access peer-reviewed journal of
   inter-disciplinary enquiry into the nature of cultural computational
   objects, practices, processes and structures.


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